Inducing Labor

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So my doctor told me today that she wants to induce labor between 38 and 39 weeks because my blood pressure is still slightly high in office (as it has been almost the entire pregnancy). I will be 36 weeks on Saturday. The non stress tests have been going well. We have done five of them now and every week she excitedly says the baby is doing great! There have been no other problems. I asked the doctor what would happen if we just let labor start on its own. She said that if I go over 40 weeks there is a chance of "dead baby." Anyway, I guess I will trust what my doctor says, but I want to wait as long as safely possible.

I'm sure people here have been induced. What is it like? How is it different from naturally going into labor? Any advice?
Is your blood pressure still normal all the other times? If so, why the need to induce because it's high in the office only?
Your non stress tests are perfect also? So why the rush?
I've had an induction with a c-section (23 hrs of pure hell) and a natural labor, much much easier. I would never be induced again. Contractions starting at 1-2 min apart piggy backing etc is not fun.
I had another post about my blood pressure on here. My blood pressure is fine at home. In the office it is usually something like 128/88. I think twice now it has gone up to 92 as the bottom number in the office, which is what she is concerned about. She said that it hasn't moved over time though which is a good thing. I would like labor to start naturally, too, but I want to trust my doctor and would like to think she knows what she's doing. I'm a little torn at this point. I really do want what is best for my baby. Maybe we will find out more after the ultrasound next week. She says that even though everything looks great right now, her concern is that the placenta will just stop working and baby will be in distress. I'm hoping she will just decide to come on her own between 38 and 39 weeks.
An induction at 38 weeks on a first-time mother...will most likely fail. She knows that.

You can always say no.

But you'll get lots of dead-baby threats.

I'd get a second opinion, but that's just me.
From what I've read, your in-office blood pressure readings aren't even considered high.

I think I would get a second opinion. Check out if your doctor has a vacation scheduled for the week you are due.

I had 2 successful inductions that resulted in easy vaginal births. That being said I wouldn't do it again if at all possible. I know so much more now than I did 12 years ago.

You've gotten good advice so far. If you do decide to consider being induced I'll be happy to share my stories with you but remember that mine are the minority, NOT the majority. Even with my good stories I wouldn't recommend it unless there is IMMEDIATE threat to you and baby.
High Priestess JessMess, follower of the Goddess of the Coiling Way and Confiscator of Concoctions in the Order of the Curly Crusaders

Thank you for the responses. Yeah, my first instinct is to say "No" to being induced. My mom was at the appointment with me (since my husband couldn't go) and when we started questioning why and what would happen, she backed down from the 38 weeks to 39. I consider the dead baby comment as a form of bullying almost. If you've read my other posts on here, you know I haven't exactly been happy with this doctor for a while. I have issues switching doctors, but that's a whole different story. It seems to me like she has had this in her head for a while and never really considered anything else. She said that even if I had been on the blood pressure medications that she tried to push on me earlier that she would still have wanted to induce labor.

I am not getting bullied into this one. I want to at least wait until 39 weeks. Everything I have read says it is better for baby to stay in longer unless there is a real threat of danger to baby or mom. So far everything has been going very smoothly. I do know things can change quickly, and at that point, I would be willing to do whatever I need to do to have a healthy baby.

Kitschy-Funny you should mention the vacation thing. Two of my friends said that actually happened to them. One friend was scheduled to be induced and the other for a C-Section because the doctor was going out of town for a vacation.

RCW-If the induction fails, what does that mean? Would I have to have a C-section at that point? I know the rate for having one is higher if you are induced. This whole thing really upsets me because I wanted to go as natural as possible.
I had 2 successful inductions that resulted in easy vaginal births. That being said I wouldn't do it again if at all possible. I know so much more now than I did 12 years ago.

You've gotten good advice so far. If you do decide to consider being induced I'll be happy to share my stories with you but remember that mine are the minority, NOT the majority. Even with my good stories I wouldn't recommend it unless there is IMMEDIATE threat to you and baby.
Originally Posted by Jess the Mess
I also had 2 successful inductions (and was bullied when I refused a 3rd one), but I always hesitate to post about them because like you said, they are the minority. I also was 40 weeks or beyond both times. Knowing what I know now though, I don't believe either induction was necessary. Get a second opinion.
RCW-If the induction fails, what does that mean? Would I have to have a C-section at that point? I know the rate for having one is higher if you are induced. This whole thing really upsets me because I wanted to go as natural as possible.
Originally Posted by SarahMarie


Yes, a failed induction means you'd have to resort to a surgical delivery.

The best way to increase your chances for a natural delivery is to avoid induction. Really. If you can't avoid induction, your chances of natural are practically nil. It's still possible to squeak out a vaginal delivery with a first-time mother being induced, but it's not all that common...and it won't be natural.

I would suggest you familiarize yourself with Bishop score and make your doctor tell you what your score is whenever she mentions induction. If the score is less than 8, you probably won't have a successful induction.

I am not against medically-necessary inductions, but, IMO, any induction that is being planned out weeks in advance is NOT a medically-necessary induction. She cannot predict what your medical condition will be in 2 weeks, and she can't predict a "dead baby" either. I would hate that doctor.
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RCW-If the induction fails, what does that mean? Would I have to have a C-section at that point? I know the rate for having one is higher if you are induced. This whole thing really upsets me because I wanted to go as natural as possible.
Originally Posted by SarahMarie


Yes, a failed induction means you'd have to resort to a surgical delivery.

The best way to increase your chances for a natural delivery is to avoid induction. Really. If you can't avoid induction, your chances of natural are practically nil. It's still possible to squeak out a vaginal delivery with a first-time mother being induced, but it's not all that common...and it won't be natural.

I would suggest you familiarize yourself with Bishop score and make your doctor tell you what your score is whenever she mentions induction. If the score is less than 8, you probably won't have a successful induction.

I am not against medically-necessary inductions, but, IMO, any induction that is being planned out weeks in advance is NOT a medically-necessary induction. She cannot predict what your medical condition will be in 2 weeks, and she can't predict a "dead baby" either. I would hate that doctor.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
Thank you for the link. I checked it out and will continue to do more research. I was pretty sure I didn't want to be induced and the more I research it, the more I am against it. Again, if something does happen and it's an emergency, that's a different story.

She has me down for an ultrasound this coming Thursday. She mentioned something about a score of 10 for things she is looking for. She said he is looking for four things, but I can't remember all of them. I know she is looking at fluid level and movement. Then, 2 more points are given for a good non stress test (she said I would have gotten those 2 points if we had done it this week). If that goes well, I am seriously going to question her when she mentions induction.
Do they take your BP as soon as you walk in? I never had high BP but it was more elevated if it was taken after I just came in from walking across the lot & through the building. They would always recheck after a few minutes and it would be lower.

Good luck
Don't let your heart be broken. Let it love.
Sometimes they take it right when I come in. I try to get there a little early so I can just sit down for a minute before going back. They rechecked it one time when I requested it and when they did, it was normal (117/76). The times that I have time to relax first, it is lower. I have mentioned this to the doctor and also the fact that at home when I take it everything is fine.
The numbers don't seem to be too high to me either. From what I read induced labor is much more difficult to go through. I had two natural deliveries, so I can't really compare myself. If I had to do it all over again, I would choose natural without a doubt. I hope you will have a choice as well.
I don't see any reason why you should have an induction, based on what you said.

My second was partially induced. He was 2 weeks + 2 days post-date and I was sure of my dates. I was nagged about an induction from the week BEFORE my due date and from a week after the pressure really ramped up. I got the dead baby speeches too, which are really manipulative. Finally I caved after being told that even if I monitored fetal movements and came in as soon as I felt nothing, it might be too late and that "is your decision to make if that's worth the risk to you."

3 days before I went in, my cervix was long, hard and closed and the OB said that I would likely end up with a section if they induced and she didn't recommend it. The day of, I was 2 cm and soft and I wonder if I was actually in early labour. They used the Prostin gel, and it ramped things up so fast that my baby was born about 4 hours after they applied it and he was born at home because I didn't realize he was coming until it was too late to get to the hospital. A labour that fast and intense is really scary and horrible.

I was told after by the OB that sometimes the gel does that to women, especially those who have had children. I guess I prefer it to having to go back for more gel, for Pitocin etc. and possibly having a section, but although it was a drug-free vaginal birth, it was so fast, and with the last bit done by ambulance attendants, that I tore, and it generally wasn't a pleasant experience.

So for me, the induction didn't preclude a drug-free birth, but I had had a child already, and it wasn't an ideal drug-free birth. In my situation, because he was too late, I don't really think waiting was an option. But I'd be hesitant about a 38-week induction. Are you sure of your dates? If not, you could be on the verge of late prematurity and the associated problems. This seems like it's more about the doctor covering her butt in terms of lowering risk than the best interests of you and your baby.

If you want, you could try natural induction techniques before consenting to a medical one (walking, nipple stimulation, sex, certain foods/drinks etc.) but to me, that's still messing with nature and I'd be cautious. Plus I tried everything under the sun and it never worked for me.

In general, I know so many women and/or doctors who get all antsy about trying to induce, naturally or otherwise, and I don't get it. A 40-week due date is just a guideline to start with, and now we're making it 38 weeks??????
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I was induced at 36 weeks due to intrauterine growth restriction. Baby girl was measuring small beginning in May. I was seeing the drs and having non stress tests 2x a week.

Last week at my dr appt they told me her growth had fallen to the 8th percentile and that I would be monitored in the hospital and will most likely be induced b/c at 36 weeks she could be safely delivered with lungs developed.

They induced me all of Friday and most of Saturday with pitocin and a vaginal invert called cervidil to soften my cervix. None of that worked and at 11:02 pm on 7/14/12 she was delivered via c-section. She was 4lbs, 6 oz and is healthy, thank God, and has been home with us since Wednesday- no hospital stay for her beyond my discharge.

My experience is that if the baby is doing fine then the induction may be a long process b/c baby might not be ready to come early. Them inducing me did not work! My baby was always fine- she was just small and wasn't growing as she should have. Drs felt she would thrive better outside of my womb where my placenta wasn't giving her what she needed for some unknown reason.

I happened to be in a lot of pain through it all, having to have 2 epidurals before the 3rd one to numb me completely before the c-section.

Everyone is different an even though my experience was not good )only b/c it was uncomfortable to be pumped with fluids, pitocin, having the cervidil inserted twice, them checking to see of I'm dilating at all, which was very painful to me- I am a first time mom and really didn't expect all of that) yours may be different.

I would ask them as many questions as you can until you feel Comfortable with what they are telling you.

Your baby is most likely fully developed and there will be no implications of an early delivery.

I hope this helps.
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Thanks for all of the replies. I have been going through a LOT of stressful things since Sunday. My blood pressure even at home has been a little high lately, so when I went to the doctor today she prescribed the blood pressure medication again and I got it filled this time. She is now wanting me to come in twice a week for the non stress tests. There are still no other problems. The doctor still plans to induce. She mentioned taking me to the hospital today, but very quickly dropped it without even any argument from me. I think she plans to really push it next week when I am 37 weeks and is preparing me for it this week (just my opinion).

During the ultrasound, baby did all four things they were looking for. They said she looks very healthy and is estimated to be 6 pounds 9 ounces right now (36 weeks, 4 days). Both my husband and I were over 8 pounds and they said if she gains a half pound a week like expected, she should be around 8 pounds, too, if we go to 40 weeks.
I really don't know how you are going to wiggle out of that induction.
I really don't know how you are going to wiggle out of that induction.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves

This is how I wiggled out of an early induction with my second (I ended up with an induction at 40 weeks because they were convinced she had IUGR despite the fact that the maternal fetal specialist who did a level 2 u/s for me said that she was fine, just a little small but growing fine):
1. I refused, citing the fact that while she was at the 5th, she had been at the 5th all along and was therefore growing
2. I agreed to weekly NSTs and ultrasounds. I made it clear that I was fine with them checking on the baby's fluid levels, stress, etc., but that I was not fine with an early induction because of a maybe.
3.; I did end up caving at 40 weeks, but I was scared and I had had a successful induction in the past.

This is similar to what I did with my third, except I flat out refused to schedule an induction. He was born at 41 w 10 d.

I would just insist on waiting until 40 weeks (and at 40 weeks, I would still try to push them off some more) unless baby becomes distressed for some reason. It is really hard to learn to advocate for yourself, it took me 3 pregnancies to figure it out. Get your birth partner to support you and back you up. Good luck. In the meantime, convince your baby to get into position for birth: talk to her (sounds crazy but hey), spend time on your hands and knees. Ask about evening primrose oil to soften the cervix; it was recommended to me but I haven't had a baby in 4 years so who knows if it is still recommended. I would also push to know your Bishop score as RCW recommended. The more informed you appear, the more likely your provider is to back down a little and have a dialog with you rather than just directing you.

Good luck and happy, healthy birth and baby vibes your way
When my husband cannot make it to appointments with me, my mom is a great advocate and helps me out. She leaves it to me, but we talk about ahead of time if I am giving her that "help me" look or ask her a question then she jumps in. She knows how I feel and is on the same page. When we ask the doctor questions, such as why and is this necessary, she seems to back off a bit.

I know I probably shouldn't have done this, but when I went to the pharmacy to fill my prescription I asked what dose the doctor prescribed. She wants me to take 200mg of Labetalol twice a day which the pharmacist said is on the high end, especially to start out. After researching, and talking to some medical professionals, I decided to cut the pills in half and start with 100mg twice a day. That seems to work. My blood pressure is now back down to around 120/80 (give or take a 2 points from each), and that is with all the stress in my life right now, including going back to work this morning (seems like school is starting super early this year!).

The baby has definitely not had a decrease in movement! Sometimes I wonder if she will ever let me go to sleep at night because she loves to wiggle and kick. The doctor is planning to monitor her twice weekly now, and if everything is great and indicating no stress, I plan to hold her off for as long as possible (40 weeks being my goal at this point). I really do want what is best for my baby, and I'm not a doctor, but my instinct tells me that as long as these NSTs and ultrasounds show a healthy baby and I feel her moving and everything seems to be fine, that holding off is the best move at this point.
Just thinking of you, SarahMarie, and hoping all is going well.
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